Bill Maher is Like an Awkward Parody of Atheist Beliefs

Famous atheist and washed up 1950s stand-up comic impersonator Bill Maher went on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert last night, and it was a gleefully awkward experience for everyone.You see, Maher is pretty bad at articulating his atheism without sounding like an ass (important side note: this is not a symptom of atheism. There are plenty of atheists who represent their beliefs well and plenty of religious folks who don't) and Colbert is a famously devout Catholic who people actually like. … [Read more...]

How I choose to see the revisions

I write this as a heterosexual person, one who is not directly affected by the new strictures in the Church Handbook of Instructions (CHI). For that reason, this is all very easy for me to say. I do not blame those who are 'closer to' this situation if their reaction is different from mine. I do not blame those who will leave. However, let's get one thing straight from the beginning: those who made this decision did not relish it. The Brethren do not look for ways to kick people out of the … [Read more...]

Stephen Colbert is right, believing in God is pretty crazy

I had the pleasure of catching The Late Show with Stephen Colbert last night. It was a great episode, and I think the show is getting better as he settles on a more familiar format and rhythm.But even from day one, the thing that’s distinguished Colbert’s late night party has been his interviews. He is just considerably better at interviewing people than Kimmel, Fallon or Conan. And last night was no different. In fact, Colbert said something in particular that I think would do us some good t … [Read more...]

Thomas, Meet Francis: The Glory of the Outsider-Leader

I remember the day he was elected, feeling amazed that a non-European was finally going to be in charge. I'd been LDS for a long time by then, but the prospect of some new blood...an outsider of sorts, shaking things up in my church of origin...intrigued and excited me more than might be expected of a temple recommend-carrying Mormon. The past two and a half years since his accession have been the unfolding of what I consider to be a divinely-led series of reforms and refocusings, and with … [Read more...]

Religious and Gay: A Catholic-Mormon Dialogue (Part 3 of 3)

This is part 3 of a 3-part discussion with Alex Griffin and Eve Tushnet. In the first post, Alex and Eve discussed discourse on homosexuality in Mormonism and Catholicism. In the second post, they discuss what elements of their faiths and other faiths they have found useful in interpreting their sexual orientation. In this post, they turn their questions toward each other. What have you found interesting about each others' answers? What was unexpected, enlightening? How might you t … [Read more...]

Religious and Gay: A Catholic-Mormon Dialogue (Part 2 of 3)

This is part 2 of a 3-part discussion with Alex Griffin and Eve Tushnet. In the first post, Alex and Eve discussed discourse on homosexuality in Mormonism and Catholicism. In this post, they discuss what elements of their faiths and other faiths they have found useful in interpreting their sexual orientation. In the third post, they turn their questions toward each other. In the third post, they turn their questions toward each other. What cultural, theological, scriptural, or ri … [Read more...]

Religious and Gay: A Catholic-Mormon Dialogue (Part 1 of 3)

Sometime at church in the past two weeks, local Mormons leaders across the country read aloud a letter addressing the Church's response to the Supreme Court’s recent decision on same-sex marriage. [fn1] In my own ward, one person asked a question that has become more and more salient: what about gay Mormons who wish to remain Mormon?Unfortunately, at present there are few good answers to this question. Today in my congregation, the answer given was that gay Mormons are no different than thei … [Read more...]

The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien

Why an 80-year-old children's book feels newer and more grown-up than the high-tech PG-13 epics recently based on it.Reviewing the Hobbit movies at this point would be, well, pointless. If you care about these things (and I do), then you already know that the Hobbit movies are bad Tolkien fan-fiction1 or even a parody—The Battle of the Five Armies reuses material from the Lord of the Rings movies in such silly ways that I’m half convinced it’s making fun of them. On the other hand, if you don … [Read more...]


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